I live 108.2 miles away from New York City. If my partner and I want to be just as equal as everyone else, it is a two-hour drive. We live in Pennsylvania, currently one of the states without marriage equality. Some states are more equal than others. New York is more equal, Pennsylvania less so.
Many of our friends misinterpreted the Supreme Court rulings and thought that gay marriage was now legal across America. Brian and I received lots of "congratulations!" and "woo HOOOO!" messages and emails and texts. But we do not deserve the attention. We cannot marry in our home state. The Supreme Court rulings do not presently affect us. My sister wants us to visit Massachusetts (another more-equal state), where she lives. She promises that if Brian and I marry there, she will "host a small yet tasteful reception." While I love my sister and realize that she wants to see our relationship recognized federally, her enthusiasm is premature. Brian and I are still in limbo. If we got married in Massachusetts, would the federal government recognize the union when we drove back home to Pennsylvania? If so, are we married or not married when we are sitting in our living room? Would we have to remove our wedding rings when crossing state lines? Will our dogs still have parents living in sin? It is all so confusing.
But, hey, listen: I do not want to be one of those glass-is-half-empty guys, so I will focus on the positive results of the Supreme Court rulings from my Pennsylvania vantage point:
- I learned a new word: "argle-bargle." Thanks, Justice Scalia!
- My state must be dearer and closer to God. The American Family Association's Bryan Fischer claims, "Sodomy-based marriage is an egregious violation of the 'Laws of Nature and Nature's God.'" Fox News commentator Todd Starnes tweeted, "Supreme Court overrules God." Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee informs us that "Jesus wept." Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.) declared that "society itself is at risk and cannot continue." Does this mean God will cause devastating natural disasters? Maybe He will spare Pennsylvania, since we do not allow marriage equality.
- Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) was officially made irrelevant with two simple words, thanks to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). When Pelosi was asked to remark on Bachmann's negative opinion of the Supreme Court decision, she stated simply, "Who cares?" Oh, snap!
- My resolve to boycott Chick-fil-A was weakening, but Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy reminded me again why we gays should stay far away from his fast-food chain. He tweeted that it was a "sad day for our nation" and that our "founding fathers would be ashamed of our gen[eration]." Then he deleted his tweet because he realized he might lose business. Homophobic... and greedy.
- The Delaware state legislature approved same-sex marriage. The bill was signed into law by the governor and takes effect on July 1. Delaware is even closer to our home than New York. So, soon, it will only be a 37.7-mile drive to be equal!
All kidding aside, I am thrilled with the great strides forward that the Supreme Court has helped the gay and lesbian community achieve. There is great cause for celebration. But I feel as if Brian and I are on a different boat. Others have docked and are partying onshore. And the party looks fabulous, darling, with rainbows everywhere. We are waiting for our boat to take us to shore to join in the fun, but it is so slow. We can see everyone through our binoculars. How long will it take us to get there? Is the tide with us? Do we need to start rowing ourselves? Should we dive into the water and swim to the shore? What should we do?